Saturday, January 28, 2023

Play

A critical number of rural IA nursing homes close; TX lawmakers consider measures to restrict, and expand voting in 2023 Session; and CT groups, and unions call for public-health reforms.

Play

Attorney General announces enforcement actions on ransomware, Democrats discuss border policies, and the FDA is relaxing rules for gay and bisexual men to donate blood.

Play

"Brain Gain?" Research shows rural population is actually growing, especially in recreational areas; other small towns are having success offering relocation incentives like free building lots, cash, complimentary dinners and even internet credits; and researchers say the key is flexibility and creativity.

Earth Day: Oceans Becoming 'Plastic Soup'

Play

Monday, April 22, 2019   

SEATTLE – It's Earth Day, and one manufactured menace threatening the world's oceans is plastics.

While estimates vary, many scientific studies find that about 8 million metric tons of plastic make their way into the ocean each year.

Michiel Abbing, author of the book "Plastic Soup", is a member of an organization of the same name, which derives from the large garbage patch found in the Pacific Ocean in 1997.

The foundation began fighting to keep plastics out of the ocean eight years ago, and Abbing says the issue has continued unabated.

"Since 2011, awareness has risen a lot,” he states. “A lot of NGOs, politicians and organizations are involved but, despite that fact, it seems to worsen instead of improving the situation."

Abbing notes that the fracking boom in the United States is pushing more petroleum into the market, which is a source of plastics.

Since the Plastic Soup Foundation began its mission, more has been discovered about the material's prevalence.

Last week, a study found microplastics have been "raining down" on a secluded area of France, 75 miles from the nearest town.

Research still is investigating the health effects of plastic on humans, but its harmful traces are well-documented, including on plankton and sea turtles.

Over the last month, whales have washed up on the shores of Italy and the Philippines with pounds of undigestible plastic in their stomachs.

Abbing says the simple solution is that we must reduce our production of plastics and adds that everyone has a role to play.

"We are all responsible for this, not only the consumers that buy plastic and throw it away, but also the producers and the politicians,” he states.
“We created the mess and we should solve the mess together."

The Plastic Soup Foundation has launched initiatives encouraging people to reduce their use of plastics, replacing them with reusable bags, cups and other utensils.

It also notes that synthetic fibers in clothing are a major source of plastic that gets into the ocean while washing clothes.

The Ocean Clean Wash initiative suggests folks use liquid soap and fabric softener and wash at a low temperature.


get more stories like this via email

New data show in California, 2021-22 state testing scores are even lower than the state's historically low testing scores. (Rawpixel/Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

Many of California's 13.5 million children and teens have not bounced back after the pandemic, especially children of color, according to the just-…


Social Issues

Americans continue to report low trust in mainstream media, with many younger than 30 saying they trust information from social media nearly as much …

Social Issues

A Minnesota House committee heard testimony Thursday about the governor's proposed spending plan for education. As these talks unfold, public polling …


From February 2020 to November 2021, the number of workers in nursing homes and other care facilities dropped by 410,000 nationally, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. (Adobe Stock)

Health and Wellness

Health-care professionals say low pay and a worker shortage have led a dramatic number of nursing homes in rural Iowa to close their doors. They hope …

Health and Wellness

Health-care professionals and advocates in Connecticut have said it will take sweeping reforms to bolster the state's flailing public health system…

In a national survey, Michigan was ranked 27th among the 50 states for its cost, access and quality of long-term care supports and services. California was ranked first. (Flickr)

Social Issues

In her fifth State of the State address this week, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer emphasized policies designed to put more money in Michiganders' pockets…

Social Issues

By nearly every measure, voter fraud in U.S. elections is rare, but that isn't stopping the Texas Legislature from considering dozens of bills this …

Social Issues

A Republican-sponsored bill in the Arkansas Legislature would make it illegal to circulate petitions at or near polling places during elections…

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright © 2021